With all the new Apple software that was released today (check out the new iWork and iLife suites), I thought I’d share one of my favorite programs to enhance your presentation.

Omnidazzle (Mac only) adds a layer over your desktop and gives you all sorts of tools. You can focus on certain elements using a searchlight or making an instant zoom selection. You can scribble over your desktop, over anything that’s there: PowerPoint or Keynote presentations, word documents, images, movies, desktop icons, browsers – anything. You can use different colors and erase everything with a simple shortcut. I like to sometimes takes screen shots with the overlay before I wipe it all away. There are some funky effects, such as fairy dust (dazzling!), footprints, or comic effects: Pow! Zot! Boom!

Granted, not all of this is useful, but some effects really enhance your presentation. Others add least add some fun to it. Download away and try it out. The web site tells you: “You’re free to use OmniDazzle as long as you like but while unlicensed it will expire after 1 hour of use and you’ll need to relaunch.” No risk in trying it out, and the $14.95 for a license are quite reasonable.

Nothing like showing my viewers what part of the screen I’m referring to, and nothing like a bit of fairy dust to wake up my students in the morning.

Software link: Omnidazzle

Felix Kronenberg is working at Rhodes College in Memphis, TN. His research interests include academic space design, video games and language learning, digital storytelling, and the culture of advertising. He teaches German and language pedagogy, and maintains the Language Technology Boot Camp blog and web site.

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  1. Ryan · August 8, 2007 Reply

    Oh how fun!

    Regarding Apple’s announcements yesterday: I’m concerned about how well the new keyboard will hold up in a long-term, constant-use setting such as a lab. It’s awfully pretty but it’s awfully thin, too …

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